Some jaw-droppin’ musicians! Have mercy…

By pure chance I happened to listen to some dazzling albums over the past week - dazzling in terms of musicianship, that is. If you play an instrument and need some inspiration to fire up your own practising, check these out… The amazing debut album An Den Day Made Tae (2020) by the Shetland brothers … Continue reading Some jaw-droppin’ musicians! Have mercy…

Jeremy Kittel: my latest fiddle fave!

Sometimes you just remain unaware of great music and musicians for years. And when you do discover them, there’s always a great “where has this stuff been all my life!” moment. This happened to me a few days ago when I first heard the Michigan fiddler, composer, all-around great musician Jeremy Kittel. I was totally … Continue reading Jeremy Kittel: my latest fiddle fave!

Gjermund Larsen and the beauty of the Nordic fiddle

If you don’t know Gjermund Larsen, you perhaps should. A master fiddler from Norway, with a sound and style that’s easy to love. Since I was at his excellent gig this summer, I have returned to his albums and recalled why I instantly liked his music the first time I heard it. Gjermund has a … Continue reading Gjermund Larsen and the beauty of the Nordic fiddle

Ryan Molloy & Fergal Scahill: One Day – November Woods

Oh but this is a fun one! Pianist Ryan Molloy and fiddler Feargal Scahill recorded - and partly wrote! - this album during one November day in 2019! Ryan writes on Bandcamp: ”We sat in Fergal & Ruth’s living room and recorded the music on this album, pushing the boundaries of our friendly frolics amidst … Continue reading Ryan Molloy & Fergal Scahill: One Day – November Woods

Listening Diary for June 6-12, 2022: Natalie MacMaster, Mishra, James Harper, the olllam, Eabhal

Master fiddlers are one of my favorite things in this world and Natalie MacMaster 🇨🇦 is one of the greatest. I love the energy in her playing; so much light and joy there. Her 2019 album Sketches was just the right soundtrack for a leisurly walk in the sunny and warm Finnish Saturday. I've never … Continue reading Listening Diary for June 6-12, 2022: Natalie MacMaster, Mishra, James Harper, the olllam, Eabhal

A Somewhat Belated Album Review / Gráinne Brady: Newcomer

(Since I’m not a music professional, I sometimes - quite often, really - miss a noteworthy release and wake up to it much later. This is one of those cases. The text below is written almost six months after the album’s release) Glasgow-based Irish composer-fiddler Gráinne Brady’s exceptional debut album The Road Across The Hills … Continue reading A Somewhat Belated Album Review / Gráinne Brady: Newcomer

Album Review / Alasdair Fraser & Natalie Haas: Syzygy

I had the great pleasure of experiencing Alasdair and Natalie live a few years ago when they played a couple of gigs in Finland. It was a charming event, with Alasdair’s stories, their musical chemistry and, of course, amazing playing. That set leaned pretty much toward trad and Celtic but that has never been the … Continue reading Album Review / Alasdair Fraser & Natalie Haas: Syzygy

Album Review / Rowan Leslie: Escaping the Dawn

One thing that keeps astonishing me about the Celtic music scene is the way it produces brilliant young musicians who refresh and vitalize the culture. Some do it by expanding and experimenting and stretching the limits of the music, while others own the old traditions and recharge them as if they invented them. Young Irish … Continue reading Album Review / Rowan Leslie: Escaping the Dawn

Album Review / Lauren MacColl: Landskein

A long time ago, in a land far, far away... That's how it feels when I remember a day this past winter, just over half a year ago. Me and my wife were in Glasgow for our second Celtic Connections and we had managed to get tickets to Lauren MacColl's solo recital at the City … Continue reading Album Review / Lauren MacColl: Landskein